Environmental Effects Monitoring
Husky has implemented an environmental effects monitoring (EEM) program designed with public input and the assistance of an independent group of qualified persons. The program was subject to review and approval by the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) and other environmental regulatory agencies. Baseline data were collected in the White Rose Field in 2001 and 2002, and the program was designed based on this information.
Environmental effects monitoring data is collected every two years.
The White Rose Production Phase Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Design document and the Baseline Data Collection Reports can be viewed or downloaded by clicking on the following:
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2012 Volume 1)
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2010)
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2008 Volume 1)
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2006 Volume 1)
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2005 Volume 1)
Environmental Effects Monitoring Program Report (2004 Volume 1)
Baseline Data Collection Supplementary Report (July 2003)
Baseline Data Collection Report (July 2000 - large file)
While Husky has a zero-tolerance policy for spills and other environmental incidents, it recognizes that these events sometimes occur. It is important such incidents are fully investigated to determine root causes so the risk of re-occurrence is minimized or eliminated.
Any spills to the ocean, regardless of volume, are immediately reported to the C-NLOPB and the Canadian Coast Guard Spill Reporting Centre. The C-NLOPB reports all environmental incidents on their website.
Under the Atlantic Accord Implementation Act, the C-NLOPB has developed guidelines governing the kinds and concentrations of discharges that can be released to the marine environment. The Offshore Waste Treatment Guidelines (December 2010) are available on the C-NLOPB's website. Such discharges are termed authorized discharges. Discharges or emissions not addressed and managed under these guidelines are deemed unauthorized discharges.
Discharges from Drill Rig Operations
The following describes the authorized discharges from Husky's drilling operations controlled under the Offshore Waste Treatment Guidelines.
- Drilling Discharges
Husky employs both water-based and synthetic fluid based drill muds in its drilling programs.
Water-based mud is used for upper drill hole sections. Synthetic-based fluids are used in deeper hole sections, especially during directional drilling operations where drilling conditions are more difficult and hole stability is critical to safety and success.
To manage and minimize the discharge of synthetic-based drilling fluids to the marine environment, Husky employs the best available technology and practices. These efforts include installing additional and specialized centrifuge technology on its drill rig and managing drilling fluids to enhance opportunities for reusing fluids by recovering and recycling barite and other constituents.
- Bilge Water
The machinery and other spaces aboard the drill rig must have oily water treatment in accordance with International Marine Organization requirements. All bilge water is subject to treatment using oily water separators that are designed to conform with the oil-in-water discharge limit of 15 parts per million at a maximum. Automatic alarms are in place should this limit be exceeded.
- Well Blow-out Preventer
Regulations and responsible drilling practices require the use of a blow-out preventer (BOP) located on the seabed on the drill string. This equipment is comprised of hydraulically driven rams that, in the event of an incident, can be activated to stop oil under pressure from being released up the drill string.
The BOP must be put in place at the beginning of each well drilling operation and tested regularly. Testing and normal operations of the BOP result in the loss of hydraulic fluids, which in this case are glycols mixed at a 30 percent concentration with water. The amounts of these fluids that are discharged vary in relation to the amount of drilling activity that takes place over time.
- Deck Drainage
Minimizing the loss of hydrocarbons from drilling operations requires continuous effort in terms of engineered containment and appropriate operating polices and procedures. Guidelines require that deck drainage from installations in the Newfoundland Offshore Area contain less than 15 parts per million hydrocarbons.
For areas on the drilling rig where oily drainage is a risk, containment measures are in place and oily water is managed to meet guidelines when discharged. If this cannot be assured by inspection and/or testing on site, then there is a provision to bring it to shore for treatment and disposal. In addition, provisions and procedures are in place to recycle some deck drainage water in the drill cuttings treatment process to minimize the use of fresh seawater.
- Discharge of Glycol-based Fluids during Subsea Equipment Installation
During the installation of subsea infrastructure (e.g., risers, flow lines, manifolds etc.), there are routine and unavoidable losses of glycol-based hydraulic fluids containing 50-80 percent water. The volumes of these fluids that are lost vary with the installation operations being undertaken.
Discharges from Production Operations
There are four primary discharge streams from Husky's SeaRose FPSO: bilge water, slop water, produced water and cooling water.
- Bilge Water
The bilge water system consists of a series of catchment trays and drains to collect any seawater and small leaks and spillages of diesel and lube oil from around machinery spaces. The normal route for the wastewater collected by the various bilges is generally via the engine room bilge pump into the bilge hold tank.
The bilge hold tank gravity feeds into the oily water separator (OWS), with the separator pump ejecting the recovered water overboard if the oil content meter confirms the oil content is within acceptable limits. If the content is too high, the oily water can be returned to the bilge hold tank.
This pump works automatically from a level controller in the hold tank, and from the oily water monitor controlling the route overboard or recirculation to the bilge hold tank. The oil is transferred to the separated bilge oil tank for storage until it can be off-loaded for transfer/disposal with all other oil and sludge tanks.
- Slop Water
Slops tanks are reservoirs for collecting both rainwater (washed over the production facility from open and closed drains) and bilge water. Contents of the slops tanks undergo oil/water separation before discharging.
- Produced Water
Produced water is any water that is retrieved from a reservoir during oil extraction. Included in produced water is formation water, injection water which is pumped into the reservoir to maintain pressure, and process water. Produced water undergoes oil/water separation before being discharged. Water samples are taken regularly, every 12 hours at a minimum.
- Cooling Water
Seawater is pumped aboard the SeaRose FPSO and is circulated around equipment as cooling water to reduce operating temperatures.